Convenience Consumer Goods Packaging Seen As Dispensable

Convenience Consumer Goods Packaging Seen As Dispensable

New research from The Nielsen Company shows that more than half of U.S. consumers would give up all forms of packaging provided for convenience purposes if it would benefit the environment.

  • 58 percent feel that packaging designed for easy stacking/storing at home is dispensable
  • 55 percent would give up packaging that can be used for cooking, or doubling as a re-sealable container
  • 53 percent don't need packaging designed for easy transport

At the same time, the study finds that:

  • 26 percent of U.S. consumers are least willing to give up packaging designed to keep products clean and untouched by other shoppers
  • 31 percent want to keep packaging designed to keep products in good condition
  • 31 percent want to keep packaging that preserves products to make them last longer and stay fresher
  • 33 percent need packaging information, including food labeling, cooking and usage instructions

One in ten U.S. consumers is not prepared to give up any aspect of packaging for the benefit of the environment.

Shuchi Sethi, vice president, Nielsen Customized Research, says "As global concern and awareness for the environment continues to grow, consumers worldwide are demanding more action from retailers and consumer packaged goods (CPG) manufacturers to protect the environment... "

The  research uncovers some differences regarding attitudes toward packaging between different regions of the world:

  • Nearly 60 percent of Europeans and North Americans are willing to give up packaging designed for stacking and storing at home. By comparison
  • only 42 percent of Asians would be willing to give up these types of convenience packaging
  • New Zealanders top global rankings as the nation most prepared to give up all packaging aspects for the sake of the environment

Sethi posits that "...cultural food and shopping habits also influence packaging choice... including whether consumers drive themselves to stores or if they rely on public transportation... the size of their homes... and storage space in their kitchens.,, What most consumers expect is packaging that provides an added ‘feel eco-good factor' by minimizing environmental impacts."

"In more eco-aware markets, including the U.S., there is an increasing expectation of packaging with minimal environmental impact, although for most consumers, this doesn't necessarily translate into a willingness to pay more," said Sethi. "

Some more eco-conscious findings among U.S. households include:

  • More than half of U.S. consumers claim to recycle cans, bottles and/or newspapers all the time, with 20 percent doing so "most of the time."
  • About 40 percent of consumers will sometimes think to look for products with less packaging
  • Nearly 80 percent of consumers make a point of combining shopping trips to save gas most, if not all of the time
  • Sixty percent of consumers buy used or refurbished products to reduce waste and materials consumption at least some of the time
  • Nearly 60 percent make an effort to buy fruits and vegetables at a local farmers' market.
  • Approximately two-thirds turn down their thermostats to conserve fuel most or all of the time.

For more about the study, please visit here.

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